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Stuart's Finest Hour

Stuart's Finest Hour:
The Ride Around McClellan,
June 1862
by John J. Fox III
2013, Angle Valley Press

The Confederate Alamo

The Confederate Alamo:
Bloodbath at Petersburg’s
Fort Gregg on April 2, 1865
by John J. Fox III
2010, Angle Valley Press

Red Clay to Richmond

Red Clay to Richmond:
Trail of the 35th Georgia
Infantry Regiment, CSA
by John J. Fox III
2004, Angle Valley Press

How to order books

 

Blogpost 32 - Edit Finished on Gettysburg's Confederate Dead

I just finished editing Gettysburg’s Confederate Dead: An Honor Roll from America’s Greatest Battle by Robert K. Krick and Chris L. Ferguson. All I can do is shake my head and say “Wow!” I say this not only because of the incredible research counted by endless painstaking hours but more importantly by the misery and sorrow encapsulated by each soldiers’ name on this roster.

This book includes the most accurate list ever compiled of Gettysburg’s Southern dead. Each soldier is listed by name, rank & company & regiment, date of birth, date of death, brief personal info, and burial spot. There are 5006 names on the list which adds up to 30,036 line entries. This represents a huge amount of work for veteran historians Krick and Ferguson. Those familiar with the Civil War field will certainly recognize Bob K. Krick’s name as he is an expert on Lee’s Army of Northern Virginia and he retired as the National Park Service’s chief historian for Fredericksburg & Spotsylvania National Military Park. He has written numerous excellent books which include Stonewall Jackson at Cedar Mountain [2001] and Conquering the Valley [1996]. Chris Ferguson is widely regarded as an expert on Confederate military records and he has written Hollywood Cemetery: Her Forgotten Soldiers [2001] and Southerners at Rest: Confederate Dead at Hollywood Cemetery [2008].  

This newest book, to be released by Angle Valley Press, represents a huge resource for historians, genealogists, family researchers and students of the War. But the one thing that keeps staring back at me off the pages is the huge amount of suffering born by each soldier whose name made the list. That suffering and anguish spread exponentially throughout the South as families learned the fate of their loved ones. Some families never really got closure on what happened to their brother, father or cousin as the roster all too frequently notes “Missing in Action and Presumed Dead – Burial Spot Unknown.”

During the first week of June 1863, Robert E. Lee’s army, numbering nearly 80,000 veterans, began to move toward the Shenandoah Valley to use it as a conduit to invade Maryland and Pennsylvania. While on the march, how many of these men thought that this might be their last campaign? Probably all of them. What would the 3rd Georgia’s Edward Aaron have done if he knew that he would be the first on this alphabetical list of death from Gettysburg? Or the three Almands – John, Reuben and William -  all from Cobb’s Georgia Legion and all possibly brothers. What became of the body of the 34th North Carolina’s major George McIntosh Clark? He was killed in action and buried in front of Gettysburg College but the body has never been found. Is it still there or has it been pushed around by a bulldozer blade and perhaps re-landscaped into an athletic field?

Then I drop three more lines down from Major Clark’s listing and I come to twenty-one-year-old Jonathan Clark. This young man served in the 42nd Mississippi and he fell on July 1. His father, forty-eight-year-old Captain Thomas Goode Clark, also fell nearby. Their bodies never made it into any marked grave. I cannot imagine the grief that Mrs. Clark must have felt when this news traveled back to Mississippi.

Welcome

Welcome to the website of John J. Fox, former Army officer, pilot and lifelong student of the War Between the States. This website contains information about my writing and books. Thank you for visiting here and thank you for your interest in the history of this great country, the United States of America. I also want to thank all the great teachers [especially English & History] I had through the years who either beat sentence structure into my head or made the past come alive.

 

Stuart's Finest Hour: The Ride Around McClellan, June 1862

RELEASED on 9/17/2013. ORDER a 1st Edition Author-signed copy at  www.AngleValleyPress.com

See What Other Historians are Saying About Stuart's Finest Hour

“John Fox’s narrative tracks the hoofprints of the Confederate cavalry through the swamps and thickets around Richmond, and around the enemy host, in miniscule detail – crossroad by crossroad, across each ford, to every nightly bivouac and along the detours made by each detachment. That makes this book the first thorough monograph on its topic.” “Dozens of photographs add appreciable value. Modern views enable readers to establish context, and will delight interested historians decades hence.” “Fox’s [dust] jacket deserves mention as a striking bit of art.” Robert K. Krick, America’s Civil War, March 2014

“Utilizing previously unseen primary sources, he has created a deeply researched and smooth-reading narrative that has the sounds of bugles, saber strikes, and thundering hoofs resonating from its pages.” Paul Taylor, Civil War News, January 2014

"Using a wealth of primary sources, some previously unpublished, Fox gives the reader an excellent in-the-saddle account of the rideand its aftermath."  "Emblematic of some of the excellent books coming out of small presses these days, and well worth a place on your bookshelf." Fred Ray, author of Shock Troops of the Confederacy as reviewed on TOCWOC - A Civil War Blog.

“Fox again shines as a skilled narrator who is adept at weaving facts gleaned from broadly accessible primary and secondary sources with more obscure eyewitness reports, letters, telegrams, and such.” C.L. Bragg, author of Crescent Moon over Carolina: William Moultrie and American Liberty and Distinction in Every Service: Brigadier General Marcellus A. Stovall, CSA

"All aspects of the planning and execution of the raid, as well as the Union response, are meticulously detailed in the text.” Stuart's Finest Hour is highly recommended reading for students of the 1862 Peninsula Campaign, the command exploits of JEB Stuart, and Civil War cavalry operations in general.” Andrew Wagenhoffer, Civil War Books and Authors Blog, http://cwba.blogspot.com/2013/11/fox-stuarts-finest-hour-ride-around.html

 

Stuart's Finest Hour description  -

Many people are aware that J. E. B. Stuart was a famous cavalry general who rode for the Confederacy. Yet, how did this twenty-nine-year-old former U. S. Army lieutenant become the 1860’s version of a media sensation? What did he do to become a household name throughout the land? At the beginning of June 1862, George McClellan’s huge Union army stood poised to decimate the Confederate capital of Richmond. The city faced chaos as thousands of civilians fled. Confederate army commander Robert E. Lee wanted to launch his own attack but he needed to know what stood on McClellan’s right flank. John Fox’s upcoming book, Stuart’s Finest Hour, places the reader in the dusty saddle with Stuart’s men as they recon Hanover and New Kent counties. Using eyewitness accounts, this first ever book written about the raid follows Stuart’s 110 mile route, deep behind enemy lines, all the while chased by Union troopers commanded by Stuart’s father-in-law, Philip St. George Cooke.

 

Books In Print:

The Confederate Alamo: Bloodbath at Petersburg’s Fort Gregg on April 2, 1865

by John J. Fox III  2010, Angle Valley Press

2011 IPPY Award Silver Medal -   Mid-Atlantic Best Regional Non-Fiction      
Independent Publisher Book Awards

"Accumulating every available source on a Civil War engagement, and parlaying that evidence into a tactical narrative, always impresses me when it is well done. The dramatic, desperate defense of Fort Gregg makes for a riveting story." Robert K. Krick, The Civil War Monitor magazine, Winter 2011.

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Red Clay to Richmond: Trail of the 35th Georgia Infantry Regiment, CSA
by John J. Fox III  2004, Angle Valley Press

2006 Georgia Historical Records Advisory Board Book Award given by     
Georgia Secretary of State for Red Clay to Richmond.
2005 James I. Robertson Jr., Literary Prize for Confederate History

 

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A History of Opequon Presbyterian Church: “Mother Church of the Valley”

by C. Langdon Gordon, Arthur L. Stanley, John J. Fox III 2009,
Opequon Presbyterian Church History Committee

TO ORDER:   

http://opequonchurch.tripod.com/id4.html

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